Marsh Mallow (Althaea officinalis)
Parts used: Primarily the roots, but the leaves and flowers are also useful
Benefits: A soothing mucilaginous herb, marsh mallow can be used much like slippery elm bark for soothing any and all inflammations. It is also particularly valuable for burns, sore throats, and digestive problems like diarrhea and constipation. However, marsh mallow is much more readily available and easy to grow in most garden settings. It makes a good substitute for slippery elm, which is an “at risk” plant.
Suggested uses: Serve marsh mallow tea for treating sore throats, diarrhea, constipation, and bronchial inflammation. Mix it into a paste with water and apply topically to soothe irritated skin. Marsh mallow can also be used in the bath as a soothing wash; combine it with oatmeal for maximum effect.
First-aid for burns
Burns can be cause by fire, sunlight or chemicals, but around this time of the year, sunburns are commonplace. First- and second-degree burns can usually be treated effectively at home, but you must be certain to keep the area clean & avoid infection. If infection should occur, seek medical advice! And always get medical attention for third-degree burns.
To treat burns, first cool the area: immerse the area in ice water or apply a diluted apple cider vinegar compress for at least 30 minutes. Choose one of more the following treatments:
- Apply a cooling disinfectant poultice made of 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil added to 1/4 cup honey.
- Apply aloe vera gel, which is cooling, disinfectant and healing to the burn.
- Take a valerian tincture to help alleviate pain.
- Apply St. John’s Wort salve, which is helpful for healing any kind of damaged nerve endings.